Hey You All

I actually enjoy FB. Silly pictures, cartoons, weird observations by FB friends (um, yeah Kristen Higgins..kind of looking at you πŸ˜‰ It’s entertaining, informative and occasionally downright interesting.

Case in point. My friend Mark posted this linguistic quiz to help pinpoint where you are from. The range of questions has to do with how you reference things…you all or ya’ll or youse guys…what common things are called etc. in different parts of the US. I was dubious and then worried I might not be labeled Southern enough because I do say you all rather ya’ll a lot more. Because, bless their hearts, I AM Southern.belle


But…it pegged me for being from Louisville or Lexington…not too far apart geographically so I award it validation. It’s interesting and fun. So your assignment…should you choose to accept it…is to take the quiz and report back. Let’s get the dialect on peeps!


As to our WONDERFUL international friends, tell us are there difference among your countrymen? I just found out from Helen what a doona is…(not, a cookie evidently as in Lorna Doone). Would you be confused if you traveled to a far shore in your own land?

Β kitty talk

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  • Kaelee says:

    I’m Canadian EH! There are different accents and a second major language within our country. Unless you speak French you will have a hard time in Quebec.
    When we traveled in Newfounland, even though the language spoken was English, we had trouble understanding a lot of it.
    My favorite word that means different things to people in North America compared to England and Australia is jumper. I love it when the hero wears a jumper/ pullover sweater.

    • Kaelee says:

      I took the test for fun and I am most similar to Seattle , Tacoma, and Portland/Vancouver. I live in Calgary Alberta which is a full day’s drive to any of these places. I have visited all three places. I was hoping to match up with Great Falls, Montana.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      Oui, Kaelee…

      And that’s the extent of my French. Oh, wait! No…also French fry πŸ˜€ Which, as I recall, are often called chips in magical places like Ireland πŸ˜€

      And oh yes. the “jumper”. To us folks in KY and I’m guessing a lot of the US that is a little girl’s dress…more like a smock cause you have to wear a blouse/shirt under it. It was my class project in Home Ec….small black check polyester trimmed with tiny red braid and brass buttons.

  • Jane says:

    Hello Joanie,
    I took the quiz and one of the three cities they gave was New York, so I found it to be very accurate. We says sneakers, not tennis shoes or trainers. We also say dinner and we don’t use/say supper.

    • Helen says:


      We call them joggers her in Oz

      Have Fun

    • Joan Kayse says:

      How youse doin’ Jane? πŸ˜€

      On one of my first trips to NYC, there was a doorman at our hotel. I commented I enjoyed his accent and then…he fell into a Soprano thick type for my “tourist” entertainment I guess. Didn’t like it then.

      As to sneakers…..when I think of that I think of canvas tennis shoes ala Keds

  • Helen says:


    I couldn’t do the test it says my browser is out of date (like me LOL) and I haven’t time at the moment to think about up dating πŸ™‚

    We have a lot of Aussie sayings that I am sure most people don’t understand at times and we call cookies biscuits and ketchup is tomatoe sauce her in Oz so and of course G’Day is the best way to day Hi and put another prawn (shrimp) on the barbie (bbq) and yes we call thick quilts doonas here. I will try and get the quiz done soon and see if it tags me as Aussie

    Have Fun

    • Helen says:

      Oh and of course what you call flip flops we call thongs

      Have Fun

      • Cassondra says:

        Helen, when I was a little girl, we called any sandals that went between your toes “thong sandals” or sometimes “thongs.”

        But now thongs are a certain kind of underwear and flip flops is the rule. However sometimes the sandals have that toe thing but don’t flip-flop because they have back straps. I never know what to call those now because people look at me funny when I call them thongs.

      • Jane says:

        Hello Helen,
        My cousin’s neighbor is from Australia and he asked us if we wanted a lolly and we didn’t know know he meant candy.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      Helen….I find it fascinating the difference in Aussie-isms and KY-isms. I learned in Ireland that cookies are biscuits though down South here….a biscuit is light, buttery, fluffy melt in your mouth covered with sausage gravy goodness.

      It’s official…I’m now starved

  • Mary Preston says:

    Here in QLD we have call our swimming costumes TOGS and our bags/suitcases PORTS. We do confuse our southern neighbours.

  • SecretNinja says:

    I did this quiz a few days ago and got a laugh out of it. I”m from central Canada so I figured they’d peg me close to North Dakota or Minnesota, them being our closest neighbours. Instead, they tell me I should be from Florida!! LOL While I wouldn’t mind the weather, I think I”ll stick to my cold-weather Canadian home πŸ™‚

    For obvious reasons, I’d be a bit of a fish out of water travelling to Quebec since I didn’t score all that great in French class but I think travelling to the East Coast and Maritime provinces would be a big difference for a city girl like me mostly because they’re speech patterns are a thing unto themselves. Entertaining for the rest of us but very hard to understand their slang!

    • Joan Kayse says:

      SN (SecretNinja) did you EVER live in Florida? Or were raised by someone who did? My friend Mark was pinpointed as NJ where he lived till the age of 10…and all those different speech patterns stuck! Course his parents were from there and probably spoke New Joisey in the house πŸ˜€

      • SecretNinja says:

        Nope, I was born in Asia, moved to Canada when I was a wee babe and I’ve lived here all my life. The furthest I’ve ever traveled in the States was Chicago! And both my parents were born overseas as well. πŸ™‚

  • Shannon says:

    It put me as in Huntsville-Birmingham area. I guess that points out I’m in between Idaho where I grew up, Syracuse and Texas where I went to school, and North Carolina where I worked for 15 years. Who knows how living in DC with lots of accents has added to that.

    The question about dinner and supper had me thinking. I know it means different things but I couldn’t decide or remember the difference.

  • Laurie G says:

    I took the quiz and the three cities they had for me are Madison,WI, Milwukee, WI and Stockton, CA. Very accurate as I went to college in Madison, worked in Milwaukee but now live in FL & WI.
    I’ve never been to Stockton.
    One point they highlighted I say Kiddy corner.

    It was fun reading the different slang. Several I hadn’t heard of.

    Even in Wisconsin you do hear different dialects:
    northern Wisconsin has the long dragged out ” o” sound boat and go
    enso =and so on
    aina true -= aint it = isn’t that right
    and finally they change the ” t” to a “d” sound (these , them and those) dese , dem and dose, which drives me crazy.

    We say
    roof like woof
    bag and flag and rag with a long “a” sound
    tennies or tennis shoes

    I grew up with thongs for flipflops too.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      I love listening to people from MN and WI and that area speak. Yes, the movie Fargo highlighted it but…it’s cool.

      As to thongs? Yeah…whole ‘nother meaning around here….

    • Debbie Oxier says:

      I forgot about the thongs. That’s what they were called in my day as well, referring to flip flops and not women’ underwear. My sister-in-law says you-uns all the time. Never heard it until I married her brother. Our former pastor was from New York and he called soda soder. Pay an ‘r’ on anything ending in ‘a’ . I find it interesting.

  • Deb says:

    Oh, WOW! Weird! I took the quiz and it said the three similar cities would be Des Moines, Rockford, or Milwaukee, and I live in Iowa….so Des Moines is only an hour away from me.

    In Iowa we do have different ways to say some words. For example, I say crick instead of creek (a small stream of water) and I say hayrack ride and not hayride.

    Fun blog today, Joan!

    • Joan Kayse says:

      Hey Deb!

      I will lapse into crick sometimes when…for some unexplainable reason…I country-fy my speech. I lapse into rather easily which is bafflin’…don’t ya reackon?

  • Anna Sugden says:

    LOL Joanie! I did the quiz and it told me I came from Joisey or NY! Guess you can take the girl out of NJ/NY, but you can’t take the NJ/NY out of the girl πŸ™‚

    There are still things that baffle me on either side of the Pond or Down Under, but most of the time I can work it out. My Two Nations Divided post on FB – every Friday – covers lots of familiarity and confusion πŸ˜‰

    As for dialects and accents – you could say we have a few in England πŸ™‚

  • Caren Crane says:

    JT, I did this quiz and came up as a Huntsville-Birmingham and something else in Alabama accent. Fair enough. I grew up in Nashville (which isn’t too far from Huntsville, just a few hours south) and my parents lived in Auburn, AL while Daddy was in vet school at Auburn. Mama’s family had come from the mountains (DEEP in the mountains) of NE Tennessee and Daddy’s mom was from Nashville and dad was from a little town called Summerville on the TN/AL border.

    One question that messed me up was the one about the strip of grass by the sidewalk. They didn’t have anything I recognized in that one. Also the highway/interstate thing. For me, if it’s got traffic lights, it’s a highway. If it doesn’t and it starts with an “I”, it’s an interstate. Maybe I’m just too specific about things! But I almost always say Y’ALL and lightning bugs, which seem to be differentiators. πŸ™‚

    • Caren Crane says:

      Birmingham-Columbus-Montgomery. So, north Georgia and north Alabama. Though they did peg me in Nashville on the map showing where people call ALL carbonated beverages “coke”. πŸ˜€

  • Patty L. says:

    Birmingham, Jackson and I forgot the other. ;( However, I live in MD, just south of DC so geographically I am to far north for my dialect. I am fine with that I want to move south. πŸ™‚ I must admit to having many southern relatives just not that far south. Fun quiz.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      Well now Patty, I’ve heard tell that MD IS the south….rumors abound πŸ˜€

      But sounds like you have an advantage already πŸ˜€ ya’ll

  • Debbie Oxier says:

    I took this quiz the other day and while I was born and raised in Indiana, it showed I have the dialect of someone in Nebraska or Kansas. My hubby, on the other hand, who was born and raised in Ohio, got southwestern Ohio and Kentucky. Interestingly enough, his dad’s relatives were from Kentucky.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      I have lots of friends from Ohio and there is distinctive dialects. My OTHER friend Suzanne is from Cleveland area as is Drew Carey …they both say “dollah” for dollar….

  • pjpuppymom says:

    I took this a few days ago and was surprised by the results. It placed me in three different geographic areas of Florida (I’ve lived in two of them) where I spent my 20’s, 30’s and 40’s but didn’t register any influence from my first twenty years in Michigan or the past almost twenty years in the Carolinas. Maybe I really am a Florida girl at heart. πŸ˜‰

  • Diana Huffer says:

    That quiz is hilarious! It showed me from Louisville, Lexington or Columbus… Columbus is right. I spent the first 3 years of my life in Columbus but have been within 35-50 miles of Columbus my entire life! Pretty cool!

    • Joan Kayse says:

      Say “dollar” and I’ll let you know for sure πŸ˜€

      As a Louisvillian, I do like Columbus…maybe there is an “aura” that is mutual?

      • Diana Huffer says:

        Doll-ar… πŸ™‚ I could by the “aura” part — I’ve never to either city so I’ll defer to your expertise. πŸ™‚

  • catslady says:

    Wow, spot on. I didn’t think I had that many correct but it got my city, Pittsburgh, There are a few words I learned from my dad who grew up in Mississippi and my husband has traveled all over and I thought I picked some up from him too but I guess not lol.

    • Joan Kayse says:

      You’re in Pittsburgh, catslady?

      Your typing never gave a clue πŸ˜€

      Maybe not in PIttsburgh but do you find in PA in general any Amish influence? They have interesting dialects

      • catslady says:

        Yes, Pittsburgh. They didn’t ask about gum bands or chipped ham lol. Amish country is about 4 or 5 hours away and not that I know.

  • LOL, Joanie, I did this a couple of days ago from you FB page.

    It has me from Mobile, Memphis and Virginia. Now since I was raised in Columbus in the heart of the midwest one might think this is odd. HOWEVER, my parents are both from eastern Tennessee, I used to live with two girls from Ironton on the Ohio river and they sounded like they were from deep hills of Kentucky, I’ve lived in Florida among the refugees from Jersey and now reside in Texas. Not to mention I tend to pick up accents and local jargon very easily.

    I think I confused the poor quiz!

  • EC Spurlock says:

    I’ve seen the dialect map before but it was interesting taking the quiz and seeing whether it “got” where I came from. It triangulated me between Yonkers, Springfield and Providence, which is more or less accurate in that where I grew up is about equidistant from all three. Apparently the last 20 years I have spent in Atlanta hasn’t affected my speech patterns much, at least not on paper! I bet the question about the sandwich nailed it all by itself — I don’t know anybody else who refers to them as “grinders” except southern New England!

    • Joan Kayse says:

      I saw “grinders” on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives….thought it had a real working man’s pantena…or pantenar as some would say.

      I wonder if anyone there is following the trend with smaller versions called “sliders”? Then they’d be grinder sliders which sounds WAY too messy to eat. Besides…we all know that sliders are White Castle Burgers πŸ˜€

      • EC Spurlock says:

        A “slider” version of a grinder is a hoagie — same fillings on a kaiser roll instead of a long grinder roll. Not a whole lot smaller, just a different shape! And actually there’s getting to be distinction between “grinders” and “subs”: Subs have cold fillings like cold cuts and tuna and grinders have hot fillings like meatballs and eggplant.

        And DH is a Detroit boy so yeah we love our Castles! He has never understood “grinders” and still can’t get used to me saying “soda” when he says “pop”.

  • Cassondra says:

    Joanie, I didn’t take the quizz yet because I’m having some browser issues. But I’ve taken these before and it pegged me correctly. The thing is, I’ve purposely adopted the dialect of where I live, I used to be able to switch really easily–in just a day or two–but now I can’t, so I’m stuck with what I have. I had “no accent” for a long time because of broadcasting training, and I found out these quizzes will often miss you if your parents moved to an area from another place. Because we speak most like our parents, usually.

    I find this stuff endlessly interesting. I love how language develops and these are always so much fun.

    Great blog!

    By the way I grew up saying “dinner” for lunch and supper for –well–the evening meal. I changed that on purpose as I grew older so I’d fit in easier when I traveled around with bands. I think dialects and accents are cool and if I had it to do over, I wouldn’t change mine.

  • Minna says:

    Sure, we have different dialects and some are more difficult to understand than others. We certainly have here in North Carelia words that someone say, from Helsinki couldn’t understand. Like “holotna” -as far as I know it’s a loan word from Russian and it means cold.
    “Muantie on kierΓ€llΓ€ jiΓ€llΓ€” -“muantie”-road
    “kierΓ€llΓ€” -this is the hard word to translate, there isn’t even an equivalence in standard Finnish. It’s usually the small roads that are like this when the temperature is around 0- +1 Celcius or so for a while and instead of snow you suddenly have nothing but ice on the road. It’s even worse, when there is some water on top. Just try to walk on a road like that, especially when the road isn’t all that smooth.
    “jiΓ€llΓ€”- ice

    • Joan Kayse says:

      I think we can all agree, Minna..no matter the dialect or language that suddenly faced with icy roads we would all yell….

      Insert appropriate expletive πŸ˜€

  • Mozette says:

    Wow! I may not be from the States, but I sure speak like somebody from Detroit! πŸ˜€ Okay, then, I’d mix in pretty well from there anyway…. πŸ˜€

    And as fate would have, Australia has it’s own set of dialogues and dialects too. You can always tell if somebody is from Sydney or Melbourne on the news because when they talk about Queensland, they pronounce it: ‘Queensl’nd’ swallowing the ‘a’ and land… it’s really funny to watch them speak.

    One time I was listening to Triple J (a Sydney radio station) and they had three news stories about Brisbane… they talked about Dalby (where they pronounced the ‘a’ and it sounded funny to me), talked about Capalaba (pronouncing all the letters as though they were speaking Latin instead of finding out how to pronounce the suburb – which is CaPALaba… hehehe funny when you think about it)… and there was another one, but I’ve forgotten it now. Funny as… πŸ˜€


    • Joan Kayse says:

      See I would say Queensland and Brisbane but don’t they pronounce it as Bris(been)??

      • Mozette says:

        Interesting you should say that about Brisbane… but really a lot of people who live in the southern states of Australia (who we nickname Mexicans for some inane reason I can’t quite understand) pronounce Brisbane as Bris-bin … strange people. πŸ˜›

  • flchen1 says:

    Hmm… my three closest matches were Stockton, Anchorage, or Salt Lake City… Interesting! Language is FUN!

  • Joanie, I took the quiz, but the iPad did not like loading the map. Just as I gave up and closed the window, the map appeared. But the window was closing, so it was too late to see the cities, alas. I definitely came up as southern, no surprise since my people have lived in the Carolinas since before the American Revolution and I’ve spent my entire life here.

    The dh is from the Colorado Front Range, and he calls soft drinks pop.

    Fun post!